My Sister Rosa – The Sneaky Book that caught me off guard

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Publication date : January 27th, 2016goodreads

Publisher : Allen & Unwin

Genre : Young Adult | Thriller

Page Count: 398

Synopsis : What if the most terrifying person you’d ever met was your ten-year old sister?
‘I promise,’ said Rosa. ‘I won’t kill and I won’t make anyone else kill.’
I can’t see the loophole. Since the guinea pig there’s been nothing. Months now without Rosa killing as much as a mosquito.
As far as I know.

Che Taylor has four items on his list: 1. He wants to spar, not just train in the boxing gym. 2. He wants a girlfriend. 3. He wants to go home. 4. He wants to keep Rosa under control.
Che’s little sister Rosa is smart, talented, pretty, and so good at deception that Che’s convinced she must be a psychopath. She hasn’t hurt anyone yet, but he’s certain it’s just a matter of time. And when their parents move them to New York City, Che longs to return to Sydney and his three best friends. But his first duty is to his sister Rosa, who is playing increasingly complex and disturbing games. Can he protect Rosa from the world – and the world from Rosa?
(From Goodreads)

Rating : 4 stars

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(No Spoilers)

This book was NOT what I expected, I expected a wild ride, full of big plot points and scary scenes but it wasn’t that. It was sneaky, it made me think nothing too bad would happen, that it’s all going to be fine, but NOOO, everything went downhill and nothing was fine. I was set on 3 stars but, the last few chapters snatched that 4th star from me and I could do nothing about it, because that ending was good. Mind-blowing. It went in a direction I didn’t expect it to go and it was amazing.

The writing is good and simple, not too many artifices but it fits the narrative. The book is written from a 17 year old boy’s POV and I could see that in the way the book is written, the book has an authentic teenager’s voice, but not a normal one, more like a teenager who’s had to mature too quickly and that’s exactly how Che (the MC) is. My Sister Rosa is written in present tense but there are some parts written in the past that are flashbacks, which makes the back and forth clear and avoids any confusion as to where in the book’s timeline one event  or another stands.

The main problem I had for most of the book is that it read more like a contemporary than a thriller, it followed the MC’s daily life, his crush, his friendships more than anything else. There wasn’t the sense of imminent danger and urgency that usually comes built-in with the genre. But on chapter 35, I realized that was clever move on the author’s part, I believed that everything would be alright and forgot that I SHOULDN’T TRUST THE HAPPINESS, I forgot that this was a thriller and that things aren’t supposed to be fine so it came back and bit me. But I must give credit where credit is due THAT ENDING IS BLOODY BRILLIANT. That’s all you need to know.

The portrayal of psychopathy in this book was unlike anything I’ve ever read before and it’s the most accurate as well. Like it’s said in the book: Not all psychopaths like to kill. And that was little Rosa’s case, she’s always, scheming, plotting, figuring out ways to go around restrictions, loop-holes in the promises Che makes her keep to do things she perceives as fun, like hurting people, lying, manipulating, etc… but she never expressed a direct desire to kill people. And that too explains how the book lacked that sense of danger.

One thing I loved about this book is while still having a plot to follow, the author took the time to incorporate social issues matters that need more awareness like the so-called color blindness and how it isn’t a good thing, biraciality, faith, street harassment, police brutality, among other things.

In that same train of thought, the cast of characters is extremely diverse as well. There is black rep, white-korean rep, non-binary rep, F/F romance, etc… and none of it was forced or used as filler as some may think. It just felt natural that these people were the way they were. We need more of that, thanks.

Che was a very interesting character to follow. He is an average boy, very clever and doing everything he can to protect the world from his little sister since his parents are in deep denial about the fact that there is a great chance their daughter may be a psychopath. And that is such a huge responsibility to lay upon a teenage boy, and that made him very mature and cautious while still keeping some of his innocence. It’s a weird mixture, I know, but it works. What was the most striking is to read that despite everything, he still loved his sister more than anything, he was always there for her, to hear her out even if he knows that she’ll never be capable of reciprocating that love and genuine interest.

Rosa is the perfect little girl, sweet and smart. In appearance. But she’s always one second late to doing things that come naturally to other people like smiling, crying and laughing. As the book progresses and she finds new ways to do what she want to do, she gets creepier, scarier and starts making bigger, bolder gestures. She doesn’t have any filters with Che, he’s the only person she’s her wholesome self with, most of the conversations she had with him, the things she said to him made me shudder, especially since she did so with such calm and composure. It was normal to her. All of it.

I knew I wanted to read this book the moment I heard of it; And although it wasn’t what I expected, it was still a very fascinating read.


That’s it until next time.

Did you read My Sister Rosa If so, what did you think?

What did you think of the ending? Did you expect that to happen?

Hope you enjoyed, write to you soon.

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God Smites and Other Muslim Girl Problems – Where a Muslim Amateur Detective saves the Day

ishara-deen

Publication date : January 15th, 2017goodreads

Publisher : Deeya Publishing Inc.

Genre : Young Adult | Mystery

Page Count: 236

Synopsis : LIKE NANCY DREW, BUT NOT…
Craving a taste of teenage life, Asiya Haque defies her parents to go for a walk (really, it was just a walk!) in the woods with Michael, her kind-of-friend/crush/the guy with the sweetest smile she’s ever seen. Her tiny transgression goes completely off track when they stumble on a dead body. Michael covers for Asiya, then goes missing himself.
Despite what the police say, Asiya is almost sure Michael is innocent. But how will she, the sheltered girl with the strictest parents ever, prove anything? With Michael gone, a rabid police officer in desperate need of some sensitivity training, and the murderer out there, how much will Asiya risk to do what she believes is right?

Rating: 4 stars

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*I received an Arc of this book from the publishers through Netgalley in exchange of an honest review*

(No Spoilers)

Before I dive into the review, I need to get this out of the way. For me, this book took “seeing yourself in a book” to a whole other level, a very literal one, because the girl on the cover looks almost exactly like me. It’s creepy you guys haha, she’s even dressed like I used to when I was in high school. Joke aside, this was such an awesome book, with very personal, relatable moments, some of which I never experienced and never thought I could experience one day. The dedication says it all: “For all the girls who were never told someone like them could, not even in books”. And I’m happy that little Muslim girls now have this book.

Moving on. Ishara‘s writing is witty, funny and pulled me in immediately. She was able to portray the authentic voice of a Muslim girl who’s trying to find the perfect balance between living under her parents’ very conservative roof and doing things that make her happy, having a crush, helping him find his biological parents AND helping free and innocent man. It’s safe to say that the girl had a busy schedule. She took a trope that was overused and all of us Muslim girls are tired off and turned it around to have Asiya save the non-Muslim boy and not the other way around. My insides were squealing of joy.

I absolutely ADORED the mystery in this book, I wasn’t able to determine who the killer really was and even when they were revealed, I was like “scuse you, what?” but it was brilliant and made perfect sense. And that’s how I love my mysteries, to be unpredictable but most of all to make me think that I had it all figured out when I didn’t. I think that how everything was linked and the different characters connected was really clever.

Asiya is honestly everything I want to see in our representation in books. She’s kickass, very resourceful and smart. The girl is also hilarious. You know how when you don’t talk about something, it’s the thing that you always think about? That’s Asiya with sex, it is such a taboo in her community (as it is in a lot of Muslim communities) her obsession with it had me in tears, I couldn’t stop laughing. One thing I also appreciated about her is how she didn’t have that need to rebel against her parents because of how protective -and let’s face it- suffocating they were. She still loved and respected them, wanting to make them happy even if she actually went behind their backs to help people, which she knew they’d disapprove of because 1/ They don’t like Michael 2/She puts herself in danger. But she’s convinced that’s what God wants her to do. So she does. And she ALWAYS gets discovered.

Also, can we talk about her monologues to God, I CAN TOTALLY RELATE. All the bargaining, and pleading, and thanking. I don’t know if everyone does that but I definitely do. It was really funny because she’s be absolutely screwed, doing the dumbest things, knowing the outcome would be disastrous and she’ll hope against all hope that she’ll make it out. Spoiler: She doesn’t.

“So God, I could really use some help. You see, I’m not too great with this signs business. Like I’ve got this itchy, irritating feeling in my chest, but I’m not sure if You’re telling me something or it’s my dinner coming back up because my stomach is currently higher than my head. Ma’s fish curry pushing its way past my stomach sphincter and back up my esophagus would do that too, You know? So could You please, please help me out by making it really, really clear what the right thing to do is in this case?”

“Also, thank you God. You might not like me much, but I can still admit that this could have turned out much, much worse.”

Her parents are some heavy duty Muslim parents. They need to sit down, drink some water or something. Though I get where they come from and that they love her and mean well. Her mom  is the one who needs to chill the most, she thinks that just the fact of being surrounded by boys will make Asiya take her clothes of and have sex with any if not all of them, that was equally frustrating and hilarious but she is also a super-mamabear who’d do anything for her daughter and the badass things she did kind of made up for most of her over the top behaviors.

Her dad on the other hand is the voice of wisdom who lets his wife take the lead until he thinks that she went too far with her restrictions. I love how he is more moderate in his views, very gentle with Asiya but doesn’t mind putting his foot down and being strict when she does things that deserve it. One relationship that was particularly heartwarming is the one she had with her little brother, Adil was such a sweet boy and he admired her more than anyone which lifted her spirits when she needed it the most.

I can’t really say that I related with Asiya’s struggles because my family dynamic is very different from hers but community wise, I did. Oh how I did! Like the fact that girls have less freedom than boys (even the younger ones), how some aunties like to be in everyone’s business or how some Imams need to have their brains carved out and replaced because of their very mysogonistic views, luckily, the one in our masjid is wonderful and very inspirational so I don’t have to deal with that frequently.

All in all, this was a very fun, quick and in some ways relatable read. I can’t wait for the second installment in the series to see what adventure Asiya goes on next but one thing that I’m very interested in seeing is where Michael’s arc goes from where the book left him. Very intrigued, indeed.


That’s it until next time.

Did you read God Smites and Other Muslim Girl Problems? If so, what did you think?

If you are a Muslim, how did Asiya’s circumstances relate to your own experiences?

Hope you enjoyed, write to you soon.

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Never, Never – How to have the most anticlimactic ending ever

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Title : Never, Never. Part 1Part 2Part 3

Author : Colleen Hoover, Tarryn Fisher

Publication date : January 7th 2015 to January 19th 2016

Publisher : Hoover Ink

Genre : Young Adult | Mystery – Paranormal

Synopsis : Best friends since they could walk. In love since the age of fourteen.
Complete strangers since this morning.
He’ll do anything to remember. She’ll do anything to forget.
 
(From Goodreads)

Rating : 3 stars

Part 1: 4 stars             Part 2: 4 stars              Part 3:  1 star

Word Wonders (2)

 

The only thing I have room for in this head of mine right now is the firm belief that fate absolutely exists. Fate…soul mates…time travel…you name it. It all exists. Because that’s what her kiss feels like. Existence.

(No spoilers)

LORD HAVE MERCY ! This book made me so angry when I finished it and it does all over again each time I think of it again. And my awesome twinnie Marie @ Drizzle and Hurricane Books (you can check out her review by clicking the link) whom I read it with can definitely agree on that. WHAT WAS THAT ENDING ? I was immensely disappointed in the direction that was chosen for this book, because it had so much potential to be something brilliant but at the end it was just a big puddle of bleeh. But let’s not get ahead of ourselves, I’ll start from the beginning so that you can see all the emotions I wen through.

From page 1 the writing is very engaging and very addictive. It is quick and easy to fly through with chapters going back and forth between Charlie’s and Silas’ (the two MCs) point of view which is great because we get to be in both of their heads and see exactly what both of them think of the situation. The chapters are also fairly short which went perfectly with the fast pace that this book had. Oh, and even with all the shitiness that the characters go through, the book still managed to make me giggle at some points and ridiculous situations.

Never, Never has a very peculiar way of storytelling. Since our main characters both have complete memory loss we experience them going forward with their lives while trying to piece their past back together so we get both periods at the same time if that makes any sense haha. And oh my damn ! The more information they -we- get the more confusing everything gets and the more questions it raises, the suspense IS SO FREAKING GOOD, I can’t even begin to explain how it made me feel, I couldn’t put the story down, I needed to know more, what would happen next but most of all what happened before. That being said, the answers were far from being satisfying, it was the opposite actually. It didn’t live up to the build-up that was sustained throughout the whole story, it just fell flat and was a big bowl of bad quality cheese. SO CHEESY. One other problem that I had is how some elements that were used to enhance the mystery were left out when all was solved and those were some really BIG misleading hints. And the inconsistencies. They made me mad. Where is the logic in this: The guy is supposed to have amnesia, right? So how come when he watched a video of himself and Charlie he was able to describe his own feelings in a moment that HE HAS FORGOTTEN. I’m not that stupid to fall for it, thank you very much.

Characters wise, I liked Silas and kind of had mixed feelings about Charlie. The Silas we got to know is this smiley and very charming guy who’s very thoughtful and caring, but also pretty smart, since he’s the one who solved the mystery haha and untied some knots that they’ve encountered along the way. Charlie I started off disliking, she’s more closed off and harder to get emotions out of through the whole book, this is not the problem. At first, she was selfish and didn’t consider the impact that her actions had on Silas, and just like that, without any warning or development whatsoever she has a 180° change. She becomes this very cautious and trusting person when it comes to him. Again, INCONSISTENCIES.

These problems I had with Charlie’s personality don’t change the fact that I really liked their banter, it was so cute and sweet even with all odds against them. Their chemistry was there even when the feelings were off wondering to God knows where.

Book depository 1 | 2 | 3 – Amazon 1 | 2 | 3


That’s it until next time.

Did you read Never,Never ? If so, what did you think of it?

Hope you enjoyed, write to you soon.

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The girl in 6E – When I questioned my sanity

The girl in 6ETitle : The Girl in 6E

Author : A. R. Torre

Publication date : January 21st 2014 (First in 2013)

Publisher : Redhook

Genre : Erotic Thriller

Synopsis : I haven’t touched a human in three years. That seems like it would be a difficult task, but it’s not. Not anymore, thanks to the internet.
I am, quite possibly, the most popular recluse ever. Not many shut-ins have a 200-member fan club, a bank account in the seven-figure range, and hundreds of men lining up to pay for undivided attention.
They get satisfaction, I get a distraction. Their secret desires are nothing compared to why I hide… my lust for blood, my love of death.
Taking their money is easy. Keeping all these secrets… one is bound to escape.
What if you hid yourself away because all you could think of was killing? And what if one girl’s life depending on you venturing into society? (From Goodreads)

!Warning : Contains highly graphic images (Mostly in your imagination, still counts right?)

Raiting : 4.5 stars

Copy of Word Wonders (5)

“She made me feel that in all of the rotten of my soul, there still existed goodness, light. Hope.”

(No spoilers)

I’ll start off by saying that the first half is erotic with no sugar-coating and all the strong langage, leading up to the second half that is straight mind-boggling thriller.

I won’t lie, I went in very sceptic. Expecting something and coming out with something 180° different, WHICH IS FOR THE BEST. I Loved it so so so so much.

The book is written from 3 POVs with flashbacks from Deanna’s teenage years, leading up to her becoming who she is in present day, the death of her family, the beginnings of her blood thirst etc… The 3 point of views are from Deanna, Jeremy Bryant -the delivery guy who brings everything to her door so that she doesn’t have to get out- and Annie, a 7 year old little girl whose involvement in the story was pretty odd at first but as the storyline unfolds everything clicks. As for the flashbacks, they’re not confusing as a lot of flashbacks can be when they’re poorly written, in The girl in 6E, the distinction between them and the present is very clear.

The chapters are very short and varied which makes even the first 100% erotic chapters fast paced and easy to get through, and once I got to the second half OH MAN! This had me seating at the edge of my seat, my heart throbbing, my mind racing wanting to know more and fast. I expected the writing not to be very good (blame the erotic clichés not me) but I was pleasantly surprised when I found myself reading a simple yet beautifully written book, with some really good quotes (That I took note of, obviously!)

Deanna is a very fascinating character to read about. This is the first time I read about a person obsessed with killing while knowing that it is a bad thing, she has depth and a very complex personality, I remember thinking throughout the whole book “How is her brain wired?” because going into this, I was expecting to read about a vicious, blood-thirsty killer but all I had is a tortured young woman – who by the way believes in God – torn out between Cruromania and her desire to get rid of it and be normal again.

THOSE PLOT TWISTS THOUGH! Oh my god, this book left me speechless, staring into a blank wall for quite sometime after finishing it.

(Spoilers ahead)

Okay, let me collect my thoughts for one second. We know from the beginning that her family is dead, killed by her mother who killed herself afterwards, but then as the flashbacks go on she revels that the night of the massacre she went home and SHE’s the one who killed her, I’m like WHAT ? HOW? Wait a second I wasn’t prepared for that.

Plus going in, I expect anything but sweetness, but then the few brief moments she had with Annie were so cute and so motherly-like that it made me forget for a while that she left a man dying on the ground few minutes before. And the ending was so peaceful it made my heart so warm and fuzzy, I kind of wanna continue with the trilogy but at the same time I don’t want to ruin this beautiful ending. But I’ll obviously end up reading it.

P.s : I never expected to describe the ending of an erotic thriller as beautiful haha!

Book depositoryAmazon


That’s it until next time.

Did you read The Girl in 6E ? If so, what did you think of it?

Hope you enjoyed, write to you soon.

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